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NEW YEAR, NEW HOME, NEW ME (?) – Travel and Art Journal

New Year Reflections

I’m not big on New Year’s resolutions as they typically fail and are frequently not SMART – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely. That being said, the dawn of a new year is a good time to reflect on where I want to be in twelve months and develop strategies to get there.  At this point in my chaotic throes of a big move, I haven’t captured where I want to be yet but have an end vision of devoting more time to master my art and to invite others to join me on this journey. 

One practice I think is more beneficial is to choose an intentions or a word for the year. My intention/word for 2023 is “FOCUS.” This past year with all the time on the road and living in various places has left me disoriented and scattered. Focus is an attribute I need desparately right now! I have started using the Franklin Planner method to start my day with set goals. I used this technique when I was working and don’t know why I stopped. It does work!

This time also invites one to reflect on the previous year.  My year was spent “homeless” and on the road for eight months!  I had good times and frantic times and met many wonderful people along the way. In spite of all the chaos, I was able to paint, sketch, and journal along the way.  Many of you have seen the results. 

New Home

We officially closed on the house on December 29th – not in time for Christmas, but in time for New Year’s.  As of now, we still haven’t moved in totally.  New furniture consisting of a dining set, bedroom sets, and a media center arrived in separate orders. 

Views of the interior of our new house.
Moving In!

The last of the PODs™ arrives this weekend and movers show up on Monday to unload. Interestingly enough, the Spanish translations for Marana (our new hometown) means “chaos” or “trouble.” Seems appropriate! More likely the other translation meaning “thicket” was in mind when the town was named. 

Our home is a typical Arizona house – long and narrow on a small lot with a cement block fence.  It reminds me of a “shotgun” house although larger.  A big plus for me is that I will have a dedicated studio! No more sharing the space with an office area.  I ordered a new easel set to arrive next week.  Pictures to follow.

New Me (?)

As I reflect on this past year and the new year, I see opportunities for new adventures, new connections, and new learning opportunities. This year will be the last year in my 60s. Often I don’t know how I survived to this age!

Earlier in the year I joined a course called Wild Women through Mbodied Art Studio designed to understand what’s holding me back from my true desires.  We meet bimonthly and use art practices to discover our “why.” Below shows a self-portrait transformed from who I used to be to who I am now.

A self-portrait showing a woman transformed into a new state of being.

Additionally, I have tried to do small sketches or paintings that can be done quickly. I also was bold enough to sketch in public.  I’ve always wanted to feel comfortable painting or sketching in public and the only way to get comfortable is to do it! 

Three sketches and a painting of people captured in public settings
Sketching in public

What’s Next?

This will be my last travel diary for a while.  I plan to focus more on art and share tips and lessons for people who feel like they want to be creative but something holds them back.  If you feel you fit in that category or if you’re interested in this creative journey, sign up for my emails below.

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